15 Facts About Coffee You Didn’t Know

Coffee is very much a part of our lives. And, while we might talk about brewing and roasting techniques, a lot of great information about coffee exists outside of this. For example, did you know Bach composed a piece of music declaring his love for the drink? Or, that coffee is a favorite snack of the elephant? If you liked those, we have several more amazing facts and statistics dedicated to our favorite brew.

1. Coffee wasn’t always brewed

African tribes consumed coffee by chewing the bean rather than brewing it. They ground the bean down and mixed it with animal fat before it was rolled into a ball. You can think of it as an energy bite.

2. Most coffee comes from one area of the world

There are different beans from all over the globe, but most of the coffee comes from South America. Brazil and Colombia to be exact. A whopping 40% of coffee consumed is exported from these two countries.

3. Over a million cups of coffee are consumed a day

We’re not just talking a little over a million. It’s more along the lines of 400 million. Yes, that’s correct. That number means Americans drink just over 140 BILLION cups of coffee a year.

4. The coffee and soda industry are closely linked

Decaf coffee removes the caffeine, but did you know the coffee industry turns around and sells it? Extra caffeine is sold to the soda industry to use in their drinks. They have also sold it to pharmaceutical companies.

5. Instant coffee has been around for hundreds of years

It’s hard to believe, but instant coffee has been around since 1771. England was the first country to produce it. However, it didn’t really become popular. In 1910, an American patented the process during the ‘First Wave Coffee‘ and had been in our lives ever since.

6. The most expensive cup of coffee comes from a wild cat

Accurate and very hard to believe, but Kopi Luwak coffee beans are eaten then eliminated by Sumatran wild cats. The most expensive coffee in the world, it will sell for around $600 a pound.  

7. The grounds are reusable

80% of grounds are leftover from brewing, and there are different ways you can use them. You can put them at the bottom of a trash can to reduce odors. They can be turned into an organic dish scrub, or used in the same vein as a facial scrub.

8. Finland is the coffee capital

Hold on. Didn’t we just say that most of the coffee comes from South America? Yes. But, Finland isn’t the ‘coffee capital’ because it produces beans. It’s the capital because it’s citizens drink more coffee than any other country in the world.

9. Coffee is red when it grows

This fact has a few parts. First, the coffee bean is the pit from a fruit plant called coffee berry. Second, the plant itself is a bush. And third, when the plant grows, the berries are a gorgeous red.

10. Beethoven was particular about his coffee

We all stand behind that person in line with a very particular order. Seems like people have been picky for centuries, and Beethoven was one. He insisted that all of his coffee be brewed with exactly 60 beans.

11. People have tried to ban coffee

Since coming into our lives, people of higher powers have tried to ban coffee. They believed that it would encourage “radical thinking.” Women in Britain petitioned against the brewing and selling of coffee in 1674 because it made men “useless corpses.” In 1746, Sweden not only banned coffee but anything associated with it as well, such as cups, pots, etc.

12. The average American spends a lot of money on coffee

We all have our vices, but coffee seems to be one that transcends most Americans. It’s estimated that Americans who drink coffee spend just over $1000 on it each year. That includes brewing it at home and ones from a coffee shop. That’s about the same as the average cost for cell phone coverage or electricity.

13. Coffee was the first thing to appear on a webcam

Scientists at Cambridge utilized the first webcam to monitor the coffee flow in their breakroom. The room with the coffee wasn’t conveniently located for all research teams. So, they set up a camera to help monitor the levels.

14. The oldest cat in the world drank coffee

The current record for the oldest cat is Creme Puff. She lived to be 38 years old and drank coffee every morning and had bacon and eggs as well. It sounds insane until you compare it to the previous record holder 34-year old Grandpa Rex Allen. Get this. He was owned by the same owner and fed the same diet.

15. Coffee could one day fuel more than humans

We already talked about excess coffee grounds, and it looks like there are researchers who have the same idea about finding ways to reuse them. There has been a lot of success turning these old coffee grounds into biodiesel fuel that could one day be used in our cars.


Want more amazing coffee? Come visit the Tin Cup in Madison and our new location in Opry Mills mall.